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6 Best PHP Courses in 2021 [Learn PHP NOW]

💡 Did you know? Over 244 million websites use PHP.

What is PHP?

PHP was created in 1994 by programmer Rasmus Lerdorf.

PHP is a general purpose back-end scripting language used for web development. It’s meant to be fast and flexible.

Some popular sites built with PHP include:

  • Facebook
  • Wikipedia
  • Slack
  • MailChimp
  • Etsy
  • Tumblr
  • WordPress

Why should I learn PHP?

While you may not hear hotties like Colt Steele talking about PHP, statistics don’t lie. According to W3Techs data, PHP runs nearly 80% of all websites with a known server-side programming language. In other words, PHP is used in literally millions of web applications.

There’s a very good chance you will be using this incredible programming language in your web development career.

🧠 Did you know? WordPress is used to power nearly 40% of the Internet.

Do I need to learn MySQL with PHP?

MySQL is the most popular database system that’s used alongside PHP. So if you’re going to learn PHP, it’s probably a good idea to learn MySQL.

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TLDR: Best PHP Courses

🔥 Best Overall 🔥
Learn PHP from Scratch: Educative.io

💥 Best for Newbies 💥
Beginning PHP Track: Treehouse

💸 Best Value 💸
Learn PHP Online: BitDegree

Best PHP Courses: At a Glance

Interactive or video-based learningLevelDurationSupportCertificateCost
Learn PHP from Scratch: Educative.ioInteractiveBeginner9 hours$59 per month or $199 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Beginning PHP Track: TreehouseVideoBeginner21 hours$25 per month for all courses and Learning Tracks
Learn PHP Online: BitDegreeInteractiveBeginnerUnknown$44.99 for the course
Learn PHP: Codecademy ProBothBeginner25 hours$39.99 per month or $239.88 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
PHP Fundamentals: PluralsightVideoBeginner5 hours$29 per month or $299 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
Building Web Applications in PHP: CourseraVideoIntermediate31 hours$49 per month for the course

Best PHP Courses

1. Learn PHP from Scratch: Educative.io

Learn PHP from Scratch is one of the best PHP courses overall for beginners.

➡️ Sign up for your 7-day free trial of Educative.io today.

Writing your first “Hello, World” program in Learn PHP from Scratch on Educative.io

Educative.io is our all-time favorite education platform for beginners and intermediate developers. For starters, its interactive learning environment is second to none. In addition, they explain concepts in a clear, concise manner.

And Learn PHP from Scratch is no different.

💞 We adore Educative.io. Find out why in our Educative review.

Course Layout

In this highly interactive course, you’ll learn the fundamentals of PHP. You’ll start with the absolute basics: building a “Hello, World” program.

Then you’ll learn about common concepts such as:

  • conditional statements
  • loop statements
  • functions
  • logic in PHP

Then you’ll dive into more advanced concepts like classes, inheritance and exception handling.

Throughout Learn PHP from Scratch, you’ll practice your programming skills on over 100 coding playgrounds. You’ll also find 2 assessments where you’ll demonstrate your knowledge through various questions including:

  • multiple choice
  • true/false
  • match the answer
  • write the code questions

By the end of the course, you should have a firm handle on the basics of PHP and be ready to tackle more challenging concepts.

Functions in the course Learn PHP from Scratch on Educative.io

💰 Cost: $59 per month or $199 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
9 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Interactive learning
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes

🔥 Geena’s Hot Take

In our experience, Educative.io doesn’t skimp on their offerings. So if you want to get the most bang for your PHP buck, Learn PHP from Scratch is probably the way to go.

Starting with the absolute basics, you’ll code your way to greatness in the never-ending and awesome coding playgrounds found throughout the course.


📚 Learn how to create web pages with the book Programming PHP: Creating Dynamic Web Pages.

2. Beginning PHP Track: Treehouse

Beginning PHP Track is one of the best PHP courses for beginners.

➡️ Don’t forget to sign up for your 7-day free trial of Treehouse.

If you’re an absolute beginner, Treehouse is the perfect platform to learn PHP. Their video-based courses slowly introduce you to new concepts. The goal is to help you understand a strong foundation of the fundamentals so you can build from there.

With these video-based courses, you’ll do all work outside the browser on your local computer.

Instructor in the Beginning PHP Track on Treehouse

🌳 Treehouse is awesome for newbies. Learn more in our Treehouse review.

Course Layout

Beginning PHP is actually a Learning Track. So instead of one course, there are 8 courses and 1 workshop.

Some of these courses include:

  • Introduction to HTML and CSS
  • PHP Basics
  • PHP Arrays and Control Structures
  • Basic Error Handling in PHP

Finally, you’ll finish with the course Build A Basic PHP Website. Here’s where you’ll build a media library website that allows you to organize and display books, movies and music.

Functions in the Beginning PHP Track on Treehouse

💰 Cost: $25 per month for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
21 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
No


📚 Learn more beginners PHP with PHP: Learn PHP in One Day and Learn It Well.

3. Learn PHP Online: BitDegree

Learn PHP Online is one of the best PHP courses for students on a budget.

Star rating for Learn PHP Online on BitDegree

Like Educative.io’s Learn PHP from Scratch, BitDegree’s Learn PHP Online is an interactive course where you’ll do all work within the same browser.

⚙️ BitDegree is relatively new, but is it worth it? Read our BitDegree review.

Course Layout

Like Educative and Treehouse, Learn PHP Online is an introductory course for beginners. In this course, you’ll learn the core concepts of PHP such as:

And beyond.

As you you learn, you’ll program alongside PHP lessons in the hands-on interactive code editors.

💰 Cost: $44.99 for the course
⏲️ Duration:
Unknown
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Interactive learning
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


📚 Learn PHP and MySQL with the book PHP & MySQL in easy steps: Covers MySQL 8.0.

4. Learn PHP: Codecademy Pro

➡️ Sign up for your 7-day free trial of Codecademy Pro.

History of PHP in Learn PHP on Codecademy Pro

Codecademy Pro uses a mix of interactive learning (Educative.io, BitDegree) and video (Treehouse). But in Learn PHP, there’s only 1 video, so don’t get crazy.

🚧 Is Codecademy Pro worth it? Read our Codecademy Pro review.

Course Layout

With Learn PHP, you’ll learn the fundamentals of PHP with 10 modules covering:

  • functions
  • arrays
  • HTML form handling
  • conditionals and logic
  • loops

And beyond.

Throughout the course, you’ll work on 12 mini projects such as Going to Bed where you’ll apply classes and objects.

Programming your first PHP site in Learn PHP on Codecademy Pro

💰 Cost: $39.99 per month or $239.88 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
25 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video and Interactive learning
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


📚 Learn how to create dynamic web pages with the book Learning PHP, MySQL & JavaScript.

5. PHP Fundamentals: Pluralsight

➡️ Pluralsight offers a 10-day free trial.

Course overview of PHP Fundamentals on Pluralsight

Like Treehouse, Pluralsight is a video-based platform where you’ll do all work on your local computer. But you’ll notice that at 5 hours, PHP Fundamentals is a much shorter course than Treehouse’s Beginning PHP Track.

So it’s great for beginners with a shorter attention span.

🤷 Should you even bother with Pluralsight? Read our Pluralsight review.

Course Layout

PHP Fundamentals contains 9 modules where you’ll learn about:

  • types
  • functions
  • strings
  • operators and control structures
  • databases

It also dives into web programming featuring lessons in $_Get, form validation and beyond.

By the end of this course you’ll learn the foundations of PHP programming on the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP) stack.

PHP example in PHP Fundamentals on Pluralsight

💰 Cost: $29 per month or $299 per year for all courses and Learning Tracks
⏲️ Duration:
5 hours
📉 Level:
Beginner
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
No
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


📚 Discover the ins and outs of PHP and MySQL with the book PHP and MySQL Web Development.

6. Building Web Applications in PHP: Coursera

➡️ Get your 7-day free trial of Coursera.

Instructor of Building Web Applications in PHP on Coursera

Similar to Treehouse and Pluralsight, Coursera is a video-based platform where you’ll do all work on your local computer. You’ll also find plenty of reference materials.

Building Web Applications in PHP is the only intermediate course in our list of best PHP courses.

🎚️ We’ve got mixed feelings about Coursera. Find out why in our Coursera review.

Course Layout

Building Web Applications in PHP contains 8, week-long modules including:

  • Installing PHP and SQL
  • Introduction to PHP
  • PHP Functions
  • PHP and HTML Forms

You’ll also get a general introduction to HTML, CSS and dynamic web content.

By the end of this course, you’ll understand the basic syntax and data structures of PHP such as variables, logic, iteration and more.

💰 Cost: $49 per month for the course
⏲️ Duration:
31 hours
📉 Level:
Intermediate
🖥️ Format:
Video
💪 Support:
Yes
🎖️ Certificate:
Yes


Best PHP Courses: Conclusion

Today we looked at the best PHP courses including:

🔥 Best Overall 🔥
Learn PHP from Scratch: Educative.io

💥 Best for Newbies 💥
Beginning PHP Track: Treehouse

💸 Best Value 💸
Learn PHP Online: BitDegree

So whether you’re a newbie or need a good value, we think these are the best PHP courses around.


PHP developers are also reading:


  1. What are the best PHP courses?

    Overall, we think Learn PHP from Scratch by Educative.io is the best PHP course. For newbies, we like the Beginning PHP Track by Treehouse. And for best value, we think Learn PHP Online by BitDegree is the way to go.

  2. Where can I learn PHP?

    There are plenty of places you can learn PHP including courses. You'll find some of the best PHP courses on Educative.io, Treehouse, BitDegree, Pluralsight and Coursera. You can learn more about all of these platforms in today's article.

  3. Do I need to learn MySQL with PHP?

    MySQL is the most popular database system that's used alongside PHP. So if you're going to learn PHP, it's probably a good idea to learn MySQL. That's why a lot of PHP courses also teach MySQL.

  4. What is MySQL?

    MySQL is a relational database management system based on SQL. Some of its functions include data warehousing, e-commerce, logging applications, and more. You can find where to learn about MySQL alongside PHP in today's post.

  5. Why should I learn PHP?

    While you may not hear hotties like Colt Steele talking about PHP, statistics don't lie. But statistics don't lie. PHP is used in literally millions of web applications. There's a very good chance you will be using this incredible programming language in your web development career.

  6. Is PHP dead?

    No, PHP is not dead! According to W3Techs data, PHP runs nearly 80% of all websites with a known server-side programming language. In addition, popular web apps like Facebook and Slack were built with PHP. The bottom line is, nearly 8 out of 10 sites and apps on the web use PHP. Does that sound dead to you?